Australia PM’s partner apologizes for Asian doctor joke



Agence France Presse

Published — Wednesday 30 January 2013

Last update 30 January 2013 1:54 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

SYDNEY: The partner of Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, whose fiery speech against sexism last year made global headlines, apologized Tuesday for making a quip about an “Asian female doctor.”
Tim Mathieson made the comment during a reception at The Lodge in Canberra on Monday night attended by members of the West Indies cricket team.
Mathieson, who has worked to raise awareness about men’s health issues, brought up the need for men to have regular checks for prostate cancer.
“Go and get that exam that none of us like to have done, but we know we should,” Mathieson said. Gillard was standing behind him at the time.
“We can get a blood test for it but the digital examination is the only true way to get a correct reading on your prostate, so make sure you go and do that. And perhaps look(ing) for a small Asian female doctor is probably the best way...”
The comment was met with laughter at the time, but the opposition said Mathieson’s remark was in bad taste and he later apologized.
“It was meant as a joke, and on reflection I accept it was in poor taste,” he said in a statement.
“I apologize for any offense caused.”
Gillard, the nation’s first female leader, caused a global stir in October when she lashed out at opposition leader Tony Abbott in parliament, saying she would not be “lectured about sexism and misogyny by this man.”
She said Tuesday that Mathieson was passionate about getting out the message to men to get recommended health checks, but agreed the apology was the right thing to do.
“Tim’s apologized for a joke that was in poor taste,” she said.
mfc/ajc/mtp

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

Arab News Editor in Chief Mohammed Fahad Al-Harthi hosted a banquet for editors in chief of local print and online publications, Shoura Council members, representative of the Ministry of Culture and Information, prominent writers and columnists in Je...
JEDDAH: Health workers from Riyadh’s National Guard hospital would not be allowed to perform Haj this year, or work at the holy sites, the Ministry of Health has announced.Hail Al-Abdali, head of the ministry’s infection control unit, was reportedly...
JEDDAH: The Minister of Municipal and Rural Affairs Abdul Lateef Al-Asheikh has introduced new legislative amendments to allow voters to produce a range of identity documents so that they can register for the upcoming elections.Al-Asheikh amended Art...
RIYADH: Construction on the multibillion-riyal Riyadh Metro is well under way with several giant drilling machines working overtime to ensure that underground tunnels for the project are completed on schedule.The Arriyadh Development Authority (ADA)...
JEDDAH: Officials from the Saudi Ministry of Haj have been holding meetings with their counterparts from Arab and South Asian nations in preparation for this year’s pilgrimage.Abdulrahman bin Ali Al-Nafei, assistant deputy minister of Haj and in char...
RIYADH: Four polling stations in Tabuk have stopped registering voters for the Dec. 12 municipal elections in the region.Ibrahim bin Ahmed Al-Ghabban, undersecretary at the Tabuk municipality and member of the local committee for the election of a mu...
JEDDAH: Many prospective candidates running for seats on the country’s municipal councils have been using Twitter to boost their election campaigns.Many have been using religious expressions in their messages, such as “In the name of God,” and “If He...
DAMMAM: There has been a flurry of activity on the Kingdom’s highways as service companies race to meet the Jan. 19 deadline for the revamp of dilapidated gas stations.The Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs has previously handed out rehabilitati...
RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and Germany have signed an agreement on mutual protection of classified information to provide a legal framework for enhanced cooperation in the defense sector. The pact was signed by Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Aish, assistant mini...
JEDDAH: While Saudi Arabia has now arrested the main suspect in the 1996 bombing of the Alkhobar Towers residence at an American military base in the country, the hunt continues for three others, according to reports in the local media on Thursday.Ah...
AL-AHSA: Located in the western part of Al-Qara Mountain is a workshop for the pottery industry, molding clay in plastic forms that are given permanency by the use of intense heat. This art form became one of the major attractions in Al-Ahsa Archaeol...
RIYADH: A newborn baby boy, who appeared to be just hours old, was found lying in the grass, covered with a blanket, in an abandoned field in Jazan on Tuesday morning.According to local residents, a family passing by heard the baby crying and rushed...
TAIF: Several schools in Taif have recorded a lack of schoolbooks for primary and intermediate classes for the first time in 15 years, a local publication reported.This has resulted in many boys and girls not turning up for classes. A source said tha...
RIYADH: Justice Minister Walid Al-Samaani said that directives from Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman to protect the rights of citizens and public properties are being strictly implemented.“All legal measures are being taken to hold accou...
RIYADH: Najran region has retained its veritable unique cultural heritage and attractions, which include old mud buildings constructed some 300 years ago.While the laid-back ambience in many areas is gone due to modern life brought about by contempor...

Stay Connected

Facebook